One moment I was walking with Tina and then I was alone. Completely alone on a strange street in a strange city. I stood, glancing around me, expecting her to materialize. She wasn’t the type to just vanish. My ears pounded from the second Manhattan I shouldn’t have had.
Suddenly he appeared, like a vision of virile manhood, black t-shirt, hands jammed into the pockets of his worn jeans, sexy stubble, brandy brown eyes. I felt like Cinderella and my fairy godmother had delivered Prince Charming.
“Hey, there,” I said.
He surveyed me from my three-inch painful heels to my denim mini to red halter top I’d worn on a dare. He smiled. My heart thudded.
“Are you in a hurry?” I asked.
He shrugged. A great conversationalist.
“I need some help,” I said.
“Huh?” Maybe it was still the Manhattan in my ears. “I need some money.”
“To make a phone call.”
“What are you going to do for the money?”
“Do?” I played the word over in my head. Was he flirting with me? “I don’t know. What should I do?”
“You must have some kind of menu.”
Menu. Like delivery? Maybe I had three Manhattans. That would explain a lot. “At home.”
“You want me to come home with you?”
“What? For the menu?”
“You could just tell me what’s on it.”
“I’m a little lost.” I took a step and my heel caught on the seam of the sidewalk and I pitched forward into his arms. He righted me and immediately released me. Damn. It was long enough for me to catch his scent, lime, mint. He smelled like a mojito before you added the rum.
“Is your place close by?” he asked.
“Nope. Nowhere near.”
He frowned. “You use a friend’s place?”
“Earning your money.”
What? I worked in a library. “Could you give me a lift?”
“To your friend’s?” Why was he so concerned with Tina? I should be concerned about Tina. Where did she go?
“When we get there, what will happen?”
He asked a lot of questions. I shrugged. “Do you want something to happen?”
“What do you want?”
He wanted pizza? I thought about it and then nodded. Pizza might not be a bad thing. I could sober up on pizza. “Okay.”
This guy is high maintenance, I thought. “I don’t know. Probably twenty something with tax.”
He frowned. “You charge tax? Never mind. You’re under arrest.” He pulled out handcuffs and tried to grab my left wrist, which I jerked away.
“What are you talking about?”
“You just solicited me.”
“I did not. I thought you wanted pizza with the works.”
He grinned. He was still cute. “That’s a new one.”
That’s how I found myself sitting, handcuffed in the back of a police car next to Prince Charming, the vice detective.